As frenzied mobs ran on streets of northeast Delhi on Tuesday night, 29-year-old Premkant Baghel noticed his Muslim neighbour's house was on fire. Without caring for his life, he leapt into the flames and managed to rescue six members of the family.
Shiv Vihar-resident Mr Baghel, who has been undergoing treatment at GTB Hospital's burns department, has shown signs of recovery, according to his brother Sumit Baghel.
"He is not in danger but his face has suffered partial burns. He looks somewhat like an acid attack victim but he is very proud of the fact that he could save lives, which are far more precious than anybody's look," he said.
"Our neighbours are Muslim. Suddenly we saw flames in the neighbouring house. While we went to terrace to see what exactly had happened, Premkant had already reached their house. He managed to pull five of them out safely but an elderly woman was stuck and her rescue took time and he suffered burns in the process," Sumit Baghel said while narrating the ordeal.
"We rushed to pull Premkant out, but had to wait for taking him to hospital as no one offered us a lift and no ambulance could be found," he said.
Premkant Baghel also suffered severe burns in both hands.
Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal met Baghel at the hospital on Friday.
Premkant Baghel was being hailed as a hero on social media and citizens talked about a crowd-funding campaign to help him with treatment for his face burns.
The violence in Jaffrabad, Maujpur, Babarpur, Chand Bagh, Shiv Vihar, Bhajan Pura, Yamuna Vihar areas of northeast Delhi has claimed at least 42 lives and left over 300 injured.
A large number of properties have been damaged. Frenzied mobs torched houses, shops, vehicles, a petrol pump and pelted stones at locals and police personnel.